Scotch-Irish-L ArchivesArchiver > Scotch-Irish > 2004-04 > 1081528448
From: "Linda Merle" <>
Subject: Re: [Sc-Ir] Re: Irish Ports of Departure
Date: Fri, 9 Apr 2004 09:34:11 -0700
Hi John, interesting family!
>matriarch possessed an inherited estate there which she willed to her
>youngest son years later, specifically mentioning its location.
Check the will (if it exists) in great detail
and also research the history of that estate. There's a story there about why she willed it to the youngest son and not the oldest, which would be the expected thing to do. The older children were dis-inherited. So why??
A couple possiblities: 1) The family had a religious problem. Check out the laws of the day regarding inheritance by Catholics. The laws changed in time, so the SPECIFIC year is significant. Perhaps in other words, she had no choice. Often one son conformed to the established
church so he could inherit.
Maryland was attractive to Catholics, including
closet Catholics whose descendents, even today, may
not realize their ancestors were Catholic. Usually by studying Maryland history you can determine if your family were possibly Catholic -- or a mix. THings weren't black and white, you know. Check
out who were their neighbors....
Or (2) the youngest son was the one who stayed,
tended the estate, while the others lit out for the New World. IN Ireland the son who stayed, cared for
the parents and the land got the land. Due to the
way in which land in Ireland was acquired there was
a lot less entailed land in Ireland then in Scotland and England. So you could inherit land by
will -- you really couldn't do that in Scotland,
>used the name Ballendret for a tract of land he acquired in Maryland in
I learned about this in the front essays in the standard books on British Surnames. At least I know that Reaney and WIlson (Dictionary of English Surnames) and Black (Scottish Surnames) address this issue -- Black in great detail. Surnames were adopted by the Normans in France about 1000. A hundred years later they were introducing them into England. It became fashionable and upper class to have one. In Scotland, as was the case too in England (Scotland
was not conquored by the Normans but it was infeudated by Malcolm Cannmore and other kings by inviting Normans and English nobility to settle in Scotland. )the upper class knights, etc, adopted surnames from their lands -- in Scotland -- on order of the king.
So all the oldest surnames (excepting the Irish, another evolutionary process at work) are locative in nature. In the Tudor era a collateral line of mine accompanied Henry VIII to Scotland as a page. He received a Scottish heiress and her estates and
adopted the surname of Lindsay, after her estates.
This happened all the time. It's what upper class
folks did! Its how you moved up! Married an heiress
and took the name of her estate. Or bought an
estate and took its name as yours. You were setting
yourself up as gentry.
So for your folk to do this meant they were simply
mimicing their 'betters' -- moving up in the world,
and following a 600 year tradition, naming themselves after their estate, being gentry.
(Off topic but....when my Andersons moved to
America in the mid 1700s from Ireland, where they
were probably middle class Ulster Scots, following
trades like blacksmithing and farming 10 acres of
land, they squatted on and then claimed a couple
thousand acres and GAVE IT A NAME: Anderson's Delight. Why did they (a) want land? Farming sucks.
It's hard work. Because in Britain land owning
meant you were upper class. (b) why did they name
it? Because estates have names too over in Britain. They were moving up in the world and so they were mimicing upper class custom.)
>The peculiar thing is that two of her other sons chose the names Clonmell
>and Ballyhack for lands they patented in 1700, both of which towns are
>found in the South of Ireland along the River Suir, near Waterford. This
>choice of names is inexplicable from anything I know about the family
I would keep studying the family history as there
is most definitely a connection here. Maybe to
other locales with the same names as the ones
you've found. Names in Ireland are often very
>and I can only speculate that there is a lost chapter for an
>interim period when they moved to that area, after leaving Donegal but
>before leaving for America. I suspect a Huguenot connection here since this
>area of Ireland, particularly Clonmel, had a significant Huguenot
>population at the time and there were strong ties between the Presbyterians
>and the Huguenots.
You will want to study the Huguneots in Ireland.
There were also plenty
of Huguenots in the New World that had never been
to Ireland -- and English Huguenots as well.
A family that was highly mobile and had merchant
connections at various ports didn't need to find
Huguenots in DOnegal to know Huguenots. Falley's
good for the 101 of them in Ireland. Got a whole
chapter! "Irish and Scotch Irish Ancestral
If you ever figure out more let us know -- a
fascinating family. Leaving when they did suggests
that they were not 'in' with the Restoration
government. The question would be whether th ey
were rebuilding family fortunes or launching
the family into the upper classes for the first
time. A lot of upper class families lost their
lands when Cromwell regained Ireland. Others lost
theirs when the Restoration occured in 1660.
In the 1680s things were getting bad again in
Ireland -- the Protestants were removed from the
Irish Army and replaced with Catholics. Many
Protestants feared a return of the warfare of
the 1640s and 50s. Of course they were right
since the Glorious Revolution was fought on
Irish soil in the late 1680s and early 90s.
Various types of people were experiencing
social and economic changes in that period --
what kind were yours? Landing in Maryland suggests
what they were though you'll need the county
to really know....
Perhaps your family were hedging their bets:
leave one son to guard the estates in IReland,
send the others off to try to make a new fortune
in the New World.
The history of the specific county in Maryland
that they landed in will tell you much about
In doing research for others I am amazed at how
often Maryland turns up! It's a much
bigger player in 'our' history (the American
ethnic group called 'Scotch Irish") than the
You do seem to find Protestant Maryland family
members 'turning up' with Catholics -- fer instance
some of the folk who settled in Kentucky about
1785 weren't apparently Catholic but they were
there with their Catholic neighbors. There's a
couple STODDARDs in the mix, fer instance, though
I've never been able to establish that they were
Catholics -- ie they don't turn up in Maryland
Catholic records. What can you say? Mix and match...
|Re: [Sc-Ir] Re: Irish Ports of Departure by "Linda Merle" <>|